John & Brenda's Excellent European Adventure - Part Deux travel blog

Port Of Livorno

Brenda And Penny Arrive At The Leaning Tower Of Pisa

Brenda And Cheesy Tourist Pose

The Tower And Cathedral

A River Runs Through Pisa

Bevin, Barb, Penny And Brenda Wait For The Train In Pisa Centrale

June 22, 2011

Our next port of call was Livorno, Italy, the second largest port in Italy which provides marine entry to the province of Tuscany. We had no plans to join the scheduled day excursions to Florence or Pisa but Brenda said she’d love to take the train to Pisa and the famous Leaning Tower. While I waited for her with Penny in the Compass Rose, our neighbours from home, Bevin and Barb Jones came by and joined up with us.

Armed with general directions from a dockside information booth, we made our way up to the main Piazza in Livorno and caught the bus to the train station. We caught the 11:30 train and within 20 minutes we were at Pisa Centrale Stazzione. We followed the natural crowd flow through central Pisa for about 3 kms until we rounded a corner and the marble tower was right in front of us. I must admit that I wasn’t enthusiastic about this day trip but that all disappeared in front of the fascinating sight of the Tower and its adjacent Duomo (cathedral) and I found it much more impactful than I had anticipated.

We circled the Tower for several cheesy photo ops and enjoyed the impressive marble structure of the Tower. We had been told that the engineering expertise exists to right the Tower but that the Pisano populace would go ballistic if anyone tried it. On our way back we found a lovely little air-conditioned restaurant along the Grand Via where we enjoyed pizza and paninis along with a cold bevy or two. Our return trip cost us 6.20 Euro each and it was more than worth it.

We followed our usual relaxing afternoon routine back on the Wind Surf, sliding into the evening cocktail hour where we arranged dinner with Brent and Sally from South Carolina and David and Vicki from Florida. Their company was most relaxing and we enjoyed getting to know them better. One of the things Brenda loves about how we travel is the opportunities we take to meet fascinating people, often through serendipitous circumstances.

We wrapped up the evening back at the Compass Rose with everyone regrettably counting down our final days aboard the Wind Surf and making arrangements for their disembarkation routines.

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